Just when you think that children’s books are getting better than ever, something like this comes along: Judith Kerr’s Creatures: A Celebration of Her Life and Work. The book is published on Thursday to mark the 90th birthday of the beloved children’s writer and illustrator, and it contains 176 large, beautiful pages of nostalgia for anyone who has been a child in the past half century.
The book is a form of autobiography, in which Kerr’s drawings from all ages illustrate her life story. It begins with a story about drawing a tulip in her German kindergarten and a sketch of a typical family outside a typical house. But it is not a typical sketch: the little girl, “Ich”, appears to be lighting a bonfire and the little boy has found a bunny rabbit under a holly bush. “I can’t remember a time when I didn’t want to draw,” she writes.
2013 English 4-11 Picture Book Awards – Winners announced
Established in 1995, these awards are presented annually by the English Association to the best picture books of the previous year, in four categories: Fiction 4-7 and 7-11 yrs, and Non-Fiction 4-7 and 7-11 yrs. The winning books are chosen by the editorial board of English 4-11 from a shortlist of 12-18 books selected by a panel of teachers, with input from children. The prizes are awarded at the English Association’s Annual General Meeting each May, and the winning and shortlisted books are featured in a full-colour poster in the summer issue of the journal. This poster is also circulated to libraries, children’s bookshops and other interested parties. English 4-11 is the only journal dedicated to English in the primary classroom. It is a joint publication of the English Association www.le.ac.uk/engassoc and the United Kingdom Literacy Association www.ukla.org
The Awards will be presented to the winning authors, illustrators and publishers at the English Association’s AGM on Wednesday 15 May at the British Academy in London.
This year’s Winners are:
- The Chronicles of Harris Burdick Chris Van Allsburg, Andersen Press
- Rabbityness Jo Empson, , Child’s Play (International) Ltd
- Who’s For Dinner Claire Freedman, illustrated by Nick East, Little Tiger Press
- Katie and the Starry Night James Mayhew, Orchard
- Mr Leon’s Paris Barroux, translated by Sarah Ardizzone , Phoenix Yard Books
- House of Horrors Nick Arnold, illustrated by Tony De Saulles, Scholastic Children’s Books
- In The Forest Sophie Strady, illustrated by Anouk Boisrobert & Louis Rigaud, Tate Publishing
- Jack and the Baked Beanstalk Colin Stimpson, Templar Publishing
- One Gorilla Anthony Browne, Walker Books
- Demolition Sally Sutton, illustrated by Brian Lovelock, Walker Books
- The Fact or Fiction Behind Urban Myths Paul Mason, Wayland